In Rituals of Regard and Recollection, curator Tricia Heuring gathers a selection of works on paper from the collection of JoAnn Gonzalez Hickey in response to bell hook’s belonging: a culture of place (2009). Heuring pulls inspiration from hooks’s passage to explore how the medium of drawing operates in contemporary culture as a form of record — highlighting international artists whose work reflects on memory in relation to the body, selfhood, or history. In particular, the exhibition’s title draws on a passage in which the author explores ‘a geography of the heart.’
“We are born and have our being in a place of memory. We chart our lives by everything we remember from the mundane to the majestic. We know ourselves
through the art and act of remembering. Memories offer us a world where there is no death, where we are sustained by rituals of regard and recollection” – bell hooks
For Heuring, “Our bodies hold social power and presence. Our bodies move through time and space. Our bodies hold history of geological and cosmological scales. The collection of works includes drawings and works on paper that meditate on how we occupy space in history, exploring how we remember or want to be remembered. Some of the works demonstrate how the medium translates body to paper… in the form of gesture, movement, interventions or permanence.”
A subtext to the exhibition explores the function of “collection” itself — in this case operating in parallel to Gonzalez Hickey’s life as she acquires works of art through time. Individual artworks recall the context in which they were selected and reflect the collector’s changing consciousness and connection to art and the living artists who make this work.